Indian agencies may be closer to getting the custody of gangster Chhota Shakeel’s aide, Sayyad Muzakkir Muddasar Hussain, or Munna Jhingada.
A team of Mumbai crime branch officials have been called by a Bangkok court that is hearing a case of Jhingada’s custody to seek details of the criminal cases against him in Mumbai.
This development will give India an upper hand in its legal battle with Pakistan over Jhingada’s custody. The tug of war between the two countries began after Jhingada, wanted by the Mumbai police, was arrested by Thailand authorities in Bangkok in 2002 while holding a Pakistani passport with the name Mohammad Saleem. Jhingada was arrested for being a part of the team that attacked underworld gangster Chhota Rajan on September 15, 2000 in a Bangkok hotel.
The Pakistani establishment has been trying ever since to get Jhingada’s custody. Police officials said Jhingada got his Pakistani passport from that government after he fled India.
According to crime branch sources, the Thai court has asked for details of the criminal cases against Jhingada in India and the details of his background. Four officers, headed by a deputy commissioner of police (DCP), will leave for Bangkok in the last week of this month or in early October after they get a final communication through Interpol.
“The laws in Thailand are different. They want the Indian police to explain the intricate details of criminal cases against Jhingada along with other vital information gathered by the Mumbai police,” said a crime branch officer, not wishing to be named.
Copies of all six FIRs registered against Jhingada by the Mumbai police, along with his identity proof will be submitted to the Bangkok court. The crime branch is expecting this will be the final step in getting the gangster’s custody.
Sources however said India had clinched the long-drawn legal battle tactically after the Mumbai police collected DNA samples of Jhingada’s parents and his sister in July 2014 and sent the forensic report to the court in Bangkok.
His family resided in Jogeshwari and the police had to seek a permission from Andheri court to collect their blood samples. “We are expecting the DNA has matched with that of Jhingada, but that will be known only after we speak to authorities there,” the officer said.